Trade mark decision

BL Number
Decision date
4 April 2003
Hearing Officer
Mr M Knight
Applicant for Rectification
Sharma Group PLC
Registered Proprietor
Alan William Cross
Nationwide Access Limited


Section 64 - Rectification allowed.

Points Of Interest


In the initial proceedings Nationwide Access Limited applied for rectification and invalidation of the registration in suit in the name of Alan William Cross. In his decision dated 19 July 2000 (BL O/249/00) the Hearing Officer decided that Mr Cross was not the true proprietor and that proprietorship should revert to Skylight Platforms Ltd (in liquidation and dissolved). As an asset of that company it would revert to the Crown or Duchy of Lancaster as bona vacantia.

An appeal was made to the Appointed Person. In that appeal Mr Cross accepted that he was not the true proprietor but argued that the mark should be in the name of the Sharma Group PLC. Sharma Group PLC sought leave to intervene and a request was made to file further evidence. For the reasons set down in BL O/099/01 the Appointed Person stayed the appeal to await a fresh claim to proprietorship to be made to the Registrar.

Subsequently an application for rectification of the Register was filed by the Sharma Group PLC that they be recorded as proprietors and secondly an application to record assignment of the mark in suit to Sharma Group PLC (Form TM16). At this time Nationwide Access Ltd were opposing Sharma’s request and subsequently both sides filed further evidence. This also involved the filing of evidence from the liquidators of the original proprietors Casson Beckman.

Still later the parties wrote to the Registrar on 2 October 2002 to say that they had reached agreement; the effect being that Mr Cross and the Sharma Group had assigned all their rights to Nationwide Access and that each party would bear their own costs. A fresh assignment Form TM16 together with a deed or assignment dated 25 September 2002 was filed showing Mr Cross and the Sharma Group PLC as assignors and Nationwide Access as the assignees.

As a first step the Hearing Officer noted that he needed to consider the evidence filed in the first set of proceedings and also the evidence filed by Sharma Group in the second set of proceedings. Included in this latter bundle of evidence was an invoice which showed that the mark in suit SKYLIFT had been sold for £1 to Readysense Ltd, (now Sharma Group). The absence of this evidence and the filing of incomplete evidence in the first set of proceedings had led to the Hearing Officer making an incorrect decision. The Hearing Officer went on to consider the extensive evidence filed by Mr Cross and the Sharma Group and concluded that the Sharma Group PLC did in fact own the mark in suit. The Hearing Officer therefore directed that Mr Allan William Cross’s name be removed as proprietor and that of the Sharma Group PLC be entered on the Register as proprietor. Any further assignment from Sharma to Nationwide would be dealt with as a normal application.

Full decision O/096/03 PDF document54Kb